Monday, April 23, 2012

The Blah Hole

You have a story to tell, a novel you keep in a drawer. 
(Old sock drawer)
You have a painting to paint, but you're lazy like an old French whore
(Je suis whore)

--[title of show]

It actually took me a moment to remember the URL for this blog. That's how long it's been since I've updated it. And I doubt anyone, with the possible exception of pervy fan Paul in Mass (NSFW), has missed it.

It's been a period of utter hibernation for me. I haven't been happy; I haven't been sad. I've simply been. And other than writing a half-dozen so-so jokes and obsessively updating my Facebook page every hour on the hour, I have expended virtually no creative energy in months.

This happens sometimes, though not usually for this long. When it does, I try not to beat myself up over it. "You're resting," I tell myself. "You're recharging your batteries." "You'll come back and do something big, and when you do, it'll be great."

But lately I worry that my sense of inertia is simply feeding on itself, like a black hole of laziness and apathy. A blah hole, if you will.

The truth is, I haven't been writing because nothing has inspired me to write. Which is not to say stuff hasn't been happening to me. It has. Last weekend, for example, I flew to Oklahoma City in the midst of deadly tornadoes to perform comedy at a gay leather bar, after which I spent a night of passion with a llama farmer. That sounds like it has all the makings of a great story, doesn't it?

Actual photo of us from that night.

But great stories don't necessarily come from extraordinary events. In fact for me, they often come from the most mundane sources: A trip to the supermarket, a visit to the dentist, a walk in the park and so forth. It's all about finding the absurdity in an event and successfully conveying that, along with, ideally, an emotional take-away. It's not easy, but it's something I know I can do.

Except I can't lately. Because I can't find the absurdity, and I'm not taking anything away. I'm just... hibernating. Dozing. Waiting for the season to change. Waiting for inspiration to hit.

Because normally, it does. Normally, what happens is the stuff writes itself. Whether it's a joke, a Facebook update or a full-on blog post, it just comes to me -- usually completely formed. Then it's just a matter of getting it all down on (virtual) paper before it evaporates. It's like trying to take dictation from some manic boss who's talking way too fast. That's why my best blog posts have been written in chapters. Because when the shit is really flowing, it's too much for me to get down in one sitting.

But that voice -- the voice of the manic boss -- has been very quiet for months now. I can't say why. And I miss it, because it's my voice. I am fundamentally, first and foremost, a writer. And a writer who isn't writing ceases to exist. I can go through the motions of my life -- the comedy shows, the day job, the endless TV watching, the occasional romp with a llama farmer -- but I can't actually feel much of anything.

I know this is a lot of heavy shit, but in the absence of inspiration I'm going stream-of-consciousness -- hoping that the very act of typing words onto a page will get things flowing again -- a sort of metaphysical pounding on the ketchup bottle. So far it's... not working.

Instead of further rampant navel-gazing, here are some recent photos (for those of you who haven't already seen them on Facebook):

Me and Janeane Garofalo, in the green room at UCB East.
I did a show there with her this past Thursday and was thrilled to meet one of my comedy idols. Another comic did his best to cock-block me and hog Janeane for himself the entire time, but when I finally got to speak with her, she was amazing -- warm, engaged, funny, and genuinely interested in what others had to say. We talked politics, fame, showbiz, hecklers, Fox News, Bill Maher.
It was really, really cool.

Me and Mike Bultman in Midtown.
I met Mike in 5th grade, when his family moved to New Jersey from Michigan. We spent many years making music together (he far more prodidiously than I), along with silly comedy tapes. Mike lives in a suburb of Chicago now, where he's a much-beloved high school music teacher. He and his chorus came to NYC to visit/perform last week, and we caught up over dinner... the first time we had seen each other since 2003.

Me on the Caribbean cruise I took with my friend Walt last month.
There is absolutely no reason to post this photo other than the fact that I think I look pretty good.

Me, Miriam Shor and Frank DeCaro on Frank's Sirius-XM OutQ show last month.
Miriam plays Cricket on the new ABC show "GCB," and both she and the show are rather delightful.
It was a weird coincidence that I was co-hosting with Frank that day, because Miriam and I went to college together. She was a whore in the same production of "Best Little Whorhouse in Texas" in which I played Edsel, the newspaper editor. One of us has had a very successful performing career.

Ben McKenzie ("The OC," "Southland") and me.
Ben was also a guest on Frank's show the day I co-hosted. I want to have his baby.
Ben's -- not Frank's.

OK, that's enough for now. I going to try and post SOMETHING in this space every day going forward. Not promising anything. But I'm going to try.

Homo hibernating.


Robin Fox said...

This is some of the best news in MY BORING uninspired life right now. Im thrilled you intend to blog everyday! Our friendship came from my love of your amazingn writing. You are when in your zone able to share from a very unique special place that resonates and delights the reader. So you havent been that creative lately you have been busy LIVING!! As a fellow creative it comes in waves and flows when it does. I often dont even notice I havent been creative till it has been so long and doing the same material over and over is painful. The need for something new often makes me try and summon it back in. WHo knows its the chicken vs the egg dilemma of all creatives. I do feel that just waiting for it to show up fully formed seldom happens I have to make the call out to my creative soul so to speak and ask it to send me some inspiration. Good luck...cant wait to read your next entry.

Kelley in FL (aka Kel-Kel) said...

Count on another person glad to see you trying to get back on the blogging horse, Adam. I think your plan to try to write daily is just what you need, and was what I was going to tell you before you 'said' it . Every book I've ever seen about wanting to write has said you must do it religiously, often journaling, which really is what this blog is. You new motto - feel free to put it on a sticky note on your screen - "Nulla sine dies linea." I won't tax your 7th grade Latin skills though - it means No day without a line. Am looking very happily to those lines you share with us little people. MWA!MWA!

Rebecca Olgeirson said...

Glad to see you writing again - I agree 100% and will be happy to read your blog when I am avoiding writing myself! As an aside - you must be living right, because you look awesome! Welcome back and just keep putting it out there.

Eileen Loveman said...

I've been a little busy, but I can relate - you really have to write something every day, even if there's nothing to say. I'm glad to see you writing again, I love your take on life, and now that I am back on the east coast I will be able to catch you and Momma Fox one of these weekends!

Heather Cox said...

I actually was just telling my friend how much I enjoyed reading your rants. I was missing them, they make me smile and LOL, sometimes a girl needs a good laugh in the midst of a crazy world.